Laser-activated shape memory polymer microactuators for treating stroke
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In this paper the photothermal engineering issues of novel shape memory polymer (SMP) microactuators for treating stroke are presented. The engineering issues for using lasers to heat and subsequently actuate these SMP devices are presented in order to provide design criteria and guidelines for intravascular, laser activated SMP devices. The optical properties of SMP, methods for coupling laser light into SMP, heating distributions in the SMP devices and the impact of operating the thermally activated material in a blood vessel (with and without flow) are presented. A total of three devices will be presented: two interventional ischemic stroke devices and one device for releasing embolic coils. The optical properties of SMP, methods for coupling laser light into SMP, heating distributions in the SMP devices and the impact of operating the thermally activated material in a blood vessel are presented. Actuating the devices requires device temperatures in the range of 65 C - 85 C. Attaining these temperatures under flow conditions requires critical engineering of the SMP optical properties, optical coupling into the SMP, and device geometries. Laser-activated SMP devices are a unique combination of laser-tissue and biomaterial technologies. Successful deployment of the microactuator requires well-engineered coupling of the light from the diffusing fiber through the blood into the SMP. 2002 SPIE 1605-7422/02/$15.00.